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Research Coins: Feature Auction

 
89001012

Cabinet W
ARKADIA, Arkadian League. Megalopolis. Summer 363 - Spring 362 BC

Triton XV, Lot: 1012. Estimate $300000.
Sold for $300000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

ARKADIA, Arkadian League. Megalopolis. Summer 363 - Spring 362 BC. AR Stater (23.5mm, 11.76 g, 11h). Signed on the reverse by the magistrate Oly(mpios). Laureate head of Zeus Lykaios to left / Youthful Pan, nude and with his head facing, seated to left on a rock that is covered by his mantle, holding a lagobolon in his right hand and resting his left elbow on the rock; to left, Arkadian League monogram; at the foot of the rock, syrinx and, in small letters, ΟΛV. BCD Peloponnesos 1512 (same dies); BMC 48 = Kraay & Hirmer 512 (same dies); D. Gerin, “Les statères de la ligue Arcadienne,” SNR 65 (1986), 21 = Jameson 1276 (this coin); Kunstfreund 203 (same dies). Very rare. Beautifully toned and of splendid late Classical style, and with a magnificent head of Zeus struck in high relief. Some old scratches, long toned over, otherwise, extremely fine.


Ex Sotheby’s New York, 19 December 1998, lot 26; Robert Jameson Collection, no. 1276; Frank Sherman Benson Collection (Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 3 February 1909), lot 583; Hyman Montagu Collection (Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 23 March 1896), lot 418; Photiades Pasha Collection (Hoffmann, 19 May 1890), lot 1154.

This is a wonderful example of one of the most beautiful staters struck in the Peloponnesos in the mid 4th century BC; it is a great rarity as well. The head of Zeus has been thought to have been taken from Leochares’ statue of Zeus Brontaios (the Thunderer) in Olympia, as a reminder to the user of the Arkadian claim to the sanctuary, though the user would also know that it was meant to represent the Arkadian Zeus Lykaios (wolf-Zeus) whose sanctuary was on Mount Lykaion and who had a major temple in Megalopolis as well. This piece has the distinction of having been in a number of great collections, including that of Photiades Pasha, an important Ottoman statesman of Greek descent; the English classical scholar H. Montagu; F.S. Benson, a distinguished collector from Brooklyn descended from one of the early settlers of the area; and Robert Jameson, the French banker of Scottish descent whose collection is a byword for quality and taste.